International Affairs Political Science - Term Paper

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S. It is now the Germans, the British, the Italians, the Swedes, and all of the European Union."

Over the last fifty years the American foreign policy has been characterized by "liberal internationalism and globalism"

During the period between 1781, which was the beginning of the confederation through the year 1941 the country was equal in unilateralist and isolationist in theoretical framework of international affairs. However in 1941 at the time Pearl Harbor was attacked Roosevelt sold the theoretical stance of internationalism to the citizens of America as well as to the Republican Party. Isolationism stated that our neighbors were far away across vast oceans, so therefore, why bother with problems that far away from our homes. Stated by Kupchan (2003) is: " The unilateralism came from two things:

1) American exceptionalism, the sense that we were a new, unique nation, and we don't want to engage in the world, or if we do, it has to be on our terms; and 2) American populism, by that I mean the Jeffersonian and Jacksonian tradition of fierce jealousy over sovereignty, liberty, and autonomy. (Kupchan, 2003)

These two factors are prime examples of why the U.S. Constitution contains the checks and balances.

After the Cold War ended, American policy once again became more traditional, however, with the policy of the present administration the scales are tipping toward that of unilateralism which can be clearly seen in the 'exceptionalism' that the administration appears to feel is applicable to the United States as well as the Jacksonian stance in terms of refusing to rely on other countries such as has been demonstrated in the refusal of airplanes carrying aid and relief to hurricane victims in the Southern U.S. states during the 2005 hurricane season and other refutations of assistance in shipments of oil as well. The time between January 20, 2001 to September 2001 was characterized by "two dominant wings of the Republican Party duking it out on a daily basis. One wing consisted of the neo-conservatives, the diehard unilateralists, Paul Wolfowitz and company. In the morning, Wolfowitz would announce that the U.S. was going to beef up its military spending, have the best military in the world, stare down any challenger, run the world; and in the afternoon Bush would give a White House press briefing and announce that we were pulling out of the Balkans, that we could not be everything to everybody, and that we were now going to focus on the Western Hemisphere. There was no common ground whatsoever between the heartland conservatives represented by George Bush and the neo-conservatives represented by the political class left over from the Reagan era." (Kupchan, 2003)

Further stated by Kupchan (2003) is: "the centrist liberal internationalists, the traditional Wall Street Republicans, still exist, but they don't have political power. Henry Kissinger, Brent Scowcroft, Daddy Bush -- these are all classic Wall Street liberal internationalist Republicans, but they're not anywhere near the center of gravity of the Republican Party."

If U.S. Foreign policy and internationalism are not checked and quickly, the legitimacy that the U.S. has always been know to possess could be a forgotten thing of the past as the administration legalizes the torture and denial of basic human rights to war prisoners, as citizens are dragged from their homes without the benefit of warrants much less fair legal representation. If the entity of the "big government" is leaned upon to protect the people, then the machine will grow larger and loom more threateningly over "We the People of the United States" until in a moment of desperation after having plead to the existing machine of government to protect us, that we will all have relinquished our freedoms and all of our safety as well. Isolationism is not the answer and neither is unilateralism, but instead a more traditional-based international stance that is more aligned and integrated with world politics, economics and global issues that are presently the primary focus among the nations that retain power in the millennium.


The Post Cold War Army Online at

Deprivation, Violence and Identities (2003) Office of International Affairs Update from The Ohio State University September/October 2003. Online available at

Russia Country Analysis: A Country Report Online available at: Deprivation, Violence and Identities (2003) Office of International Affairs Update from The Ohio State University September/October 2003. Online available at

Kupchan, Charles (2002) The End of the American Era: U.S. Foreign Policy and the Geopolitics of the Twenty-first Century - Carnegie Council on Ethics and International Affairs Online available at / 9/prmID/876

Political Science - International Affairs

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